Denise Park, Ph.D. focuses her research program on understanding how the mind changes and adapts as we age. She is interested not only in the function of the mind and brain, but in determining whether active engagement can maintain the health of the aging brain. She is also focusing on isolating a "neural signature" of middle-aged adults who will age with vitality versus those who are at greater risk of less adaptive cognitive aging. Recently, the lab has incorporated amyloid imaging into its research, with the goal of being able to detect healthy older adults who may be at risk for Alzheimer's disease.
The Park Lab has two primary research aims. First, to develop a strong, scientific understanding of the fundamental neurocognitive changes that occur as a result of the aging process. Second, to translate this understanding into research designed to promote neurocognitive health throughout adulthood. Our research team accomplishes these aims within the framework of several large-scale research programs.